Anne Marie DeLee is not your typical engineering student. The senior chemical engineering student from McComb has found herself engaged in nearly every aspect of campus life over the past four years. Her commitment to academics, leadership and service has led her to being one of the School of Engineering’s most well-rounded students.
DeLee graduated from Parklane Academy in 2012 as STAR student and a National Merit Finalist. She also served as Parklane’s student body president. Her high school accomplishments earned her a competitive W.R. Newman Scholarship, one of the university’s highest scholarship awards. However, it was encouragement from members of her community that led her to pursue engineering at Ole Miss.
“I knew that I wanted to go into engineering before I decided on Ole Miss,” she said. “I had some great math and science teachers in high school and enjoyed the idea of designing and building things that make people’s lives better.”
DeLee reflected that she received advice to look into Ole Miss from engineers whom she met, and after taking time to research colleges, she visited Oxford. While touring campus, she met with faculty and staff members and decided to make UM her college home.
Since enrolling, DeLee has immersed herself in campus leadership roles and activities using her talents to give back to the university. She has volunteered to help recruit future engineers by serving as a student ambassador for both the Office of Admissions and the School of Engineering. She has also served as an orientation leader assisting new students as they transition into college life.
DeLee was selected as a member of the Columns Society, where she assists various university offices in hosting visitors and managing campus events. She also serves as president of Omicron Delta Kappa leadership society and chair of the CME Student Advisory Board and is active in Delta Gamma sorority.
Through all of her leadership roles, she has maintained an outstanding academic record as a chemical engineering major. DeLee is also earning an emphasis in manufacturing through the Center for Manufacturing Excellence.
She has been listed on the Chancellor’s Honor Roll consistently since her freshman year and is a member of Phi Kappa Phi honor society, Mortar Board leadership society, Order of Omega honor society and the Sally McDonnell Barksdale Honors College, where she has contributed to Koi Talk, an honors student publication.
Faculty members praise DeLee’s work and say that she is a joy to have in the classroom.
“She is incredibly gifted, in intellect and in discipline,” said Adam Smith, assistant professor of chemical engineering. “She is one of the few students who have been able to balance being thoroughly involved in the campus community to the level she is and excel in the rigorous engineering curriculum.”
She even has made good use of her time during breaks. During the summer of 2014, she participated in a summer research program with the University of Kansas’ department of chemical and petroleum engineering. There, she worked on a project analyzing different bimetallic mixtures for use as electrocatalysts.
This past summer, DeLee spent time working as a process engineering intern with G.R. Stucker & Associates Inc, in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. At GRSA, she worked on the plant support side of the company where she had a great deal of interaction with the other engineers she was working alongside.
The internship experience reaffirmed that her academic career has prepared her for a full-time engineering position, DeLee said.
“During my last weeks with the company, one of my projects had a deadline,” she said. “I worked with several of the process engineers to get it all together and in the end, we were successful.”
DeLee has even found the time to travel abroad thanks to support from the Honors College. She travelled to Berlin in August to interview renewable energy companies.
“My focus was on solar installations, and I visited one of Europe’s largest solar parks that was constructed on an abandoned airfield,” she said.
While she has not confirmed plans for post-graduation, her experience abroad confirmed her interest in renewable energy and that she wants to work for and with people who she truly cares about. She believes that her extracurricular activities have enhanced her undergraduate experiences and will make her marketable as she pursues future opportunities.
DeLee encourages other students to seek out ways that they can contribute to the betterment of the university and serve others.
By Ryan Upshaw
Courtesy of Ole Miss School of Engineering